Vasantha Yogananthan: Afterlife (Chose Commune, 2020)

Drawing inspiration from the imagery associated with The Ramayana and its pervasiveness in everyday Indian life, the 7-book project A Myth of Two Souls mixes daily life with staged pictures combining a wide range of techniques, including colour photography, hand-painted photography and collages.

Over seven years, Vasantha Yogananthan has completed his own epic journey with thirteen trips to India, Nepal and Sri Lanka to finish A Myth of Two Souls.

The first five chapters of the project, Early Times, The Promise, Exile, Dandaka and Howling Winds were published 2016-2019. The last two chapters, Afterlife and Amma will be published in 2020-2021.


Project: (Fantastic presentation. Highly recommended.)


By The Way

Air – Heaven’s Light from Love 2. Released: 2009 by Virgin.

Just plain lovely song!

Afterlife is centered around the bloody war between the army of Ravana and the army of Rama. As its title suggests, the chapter deals with death and reincarnation. With Rama’s cruelty finally revealed, the series can be read as a visual exploration of one man’s descent into the darkness of the soul.

Although the pictures were shot in Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu over two editions of Dussehra — the Indian festival celebrating the victory of good over evil — they do not document the festivities. They focus on the trance people try to reach night after night, as if during one week they were allowed to escape their bodies to become somebody else.

Back to his studio, Yogananthan did collages by mixing several pictures together to put the viewer in a state of disorientation.

Publisher’s Info

Publisher: Chose Commune

Related Blog Post on Bildersturm: Vasantha Yogananthan and his project A Myth of Two Souls (2013-ongoing)